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Letter from General R. E. Lee.

headquarters Army of Northern Virginia, 21st February, 1865.
Brigadier-General I. M. St. John, Commissary General, Richmond:
General — Your letter of the 20th instant is received. I am much gratified to learn that you are taking such prompt and vigorous measures to procure supplies for the army, and cannot permit myself to doubt that our people will respond to your appeal, when they reflect upon the alternatives presented to them. They have simply to choose whether they will contribute such commissary and quartermaster's stores as they can possibly spare to support an army that has borne and done so much in their behalf, or retain these stores to maintain the army of the enemy engaged in their subjugation. I am aware that a general obligation of this nature rests lightly upon most men, each being disposed to leave its discharge to his neighbor. But I am confident that our citizens will appreciate their responsibility in this case and will not permit an army, which, by God's blessing and their patriotic support, has hitherto resisted the efforts of the enemy, to suffer through their neglect.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

B. E. Lee, General.

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